In Unknown, a generic conspiracy thriller from director Jaume Collet-Serra (Orphan, House of Wax), the protagonist, played by Liam Neeson, emerges from a four-day coma to search out himself within the midst of a form of reverse-identity crisis: He’s fairly sure who he’s, however everybody else around him looks to possess forgotten, as if they’ve contracted a form of collective amnesia. The filmmakers hope dearly that this amnesia can extend to the audience, that you just won’t keep in mind the Bourne trilogy, The Fugitive, or any range of alternative thrillers from that Unknown borrows heavily. Its main strategy for achieving this can be to churn out action-thriller clichés at such a breathless pace that you just won’t pause to ponder the film’s unoriginality.
Moments when arriving in Berlin for a biotech conference, world-class botanist Martin Harris (Neeson) nearly dies in an exceedingly traffic accident. Stranded in an exceedingly foreign country with none type of identification, he angrily asserts to everybody he encounters he’s “Martin Harris, Doctor Martin Harris,” to that he mainly receives puzzled appearance from confused Teutons. Events take a a lot of sinister flip when even his wife, Elizabeth (Mad Men’s January Jones)*, claims to not acknowledge him, and another man purporting to be Martin Harris takes his place by her facet.
Is this all some elaborate ruse, or simply the after-effects of the automobile accident? As Martin (Neeson’s version) probes the mystery of his lost identity, he becomes enveloped in an exceedingly grand conspiracy involving agribusiness conglomerates, Arab sheiks, a stunning Bosnian immigrant (Diane Kruger), a sickly ex-Stasi member (Bruno Ganz), and a try of stereotypically menacing German hitmen. The film’s setup is intriguing, and its plot options some clever twists, except for the foremost half it is a predictable affair, and one that gradually loses its grip on reality. As a bit of mindless entertainment, Unknown has its moments – there are a few of well-choreographed action sequences, together with the obligatory urban automobile chase – simply don’t attempt to interact it on a logical level, otherwise you may find yourself in an exceedingly coma yourself.